Automatic site translation: how to do it?

Translating a website is an important activity for a website to carry out, especially if your business is also aimed at a foreign target. Website translation is a demanding job that is generally carried out by those with translation skills, since the contents of a website are not only translated linguistically speaking, but also culturally and for this the presence of experts is required.

To start making your website multilingual, however, it is possible to rely on one automatic translation relying on specific translation plugins. Let's see together how to do it.

Automatic site translation: how to do it?
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Website translation: fundamental points

Translating a website allows companies to interact with a wider audience and consequently increase your sales.

The translation of a website is generally carried out by people with the appropriate linguistic skills, in fact the contents of your website will not be translated literally, but also in the most used language from the population in question. However, there are translation plugins that allow you to make a translation automatic website translation through the use of online translation services (e.g. Google Translate), obviously the translation will not always be optimal, but it can be an initial step in creating a multilingual site.

Before dealing with the issue of automatic translation, let's see some fundamental points to follow in order to translate your website in the best possible way.

Define goals

First, it's important to ask yourself what are the goals that prompt you to translate your company's website.

To better define your goal, it is essential to ask yourself questions about why your site needs a translation. Eg, Do you want to expand your market? Do you mainly work abroad? Are you interested in gaining particular notoriety in a specific country? 

If you want to offer a localized experience to customers in a country where you already sell, or if you don't need communicate with multiple foreign countries, translating the website could be the next activity to be implemented.

Difference between Translation and Localization

Secondly, another important aspect to consider before translating your website is to understand the difference between translation and localization.

Translation is rarely done literally because each language has expressions, phrases or puns that are difficult to replicate in the same way in another language; for example, you might find words that mean one thing in one language, but mean something else in another country. Precisely for this reason, when it comes to translating your website, it is more appropriate to talk about website location rather than translation.

In fact, localization is a linguistic operation through which a translated text is made to fit perfectly into the language culture into which you want to translate. Furthermore, it should be specified that in addition to written texts, all media for which translation is required can, and often must, be localized, such as films, documentaries and of course all content distributed via the internet. Website localization, for example, has become essential for all those companies that intend to acquire new customers and compete in the global market.

Write effectively

If you want to increase your clientele, and consequently sell more, it is essential to know write effectively. To translate your website, it is important not to forget the importance of functional copywriting.

This is where the machine translation feature of the website comes into play. You may think: if I automatically translate into contents they will not be effective, since they are not written directly by a copywriter. This is a legitimate doubt, but actually translating website content automatically can help you make content more effective, since you can invest in a copywriter who will only focus on one content review, correcting them from an SEO perspective and based on the culture of the country of the reference language.

Machine translation can therefore be a solution to reduce the translation costs of your website, since you will not have to hire a full-time copywriter, but only for subsequent revisions and refinement of the contents.

How to translate a site automatically

As we have already said, if you decide to translate a website, you should think about starting with an automatic translation of the contents and eventually carrying out a review by a professional copywriter.

To carry out an automatic translation of the website, you need to rely on a translation plugin to integrate into your WordPress website. There are several plugins that deal with the topic of translation, one of the most popular is TranslatePress, which allows you to perform an automatic translation of the website into one or more foreign languages (Pro feature).

To perform automatic translation, simply install the translation plugin, configure the plugin and activate the Automatic Translation feature. In the TranslatePress Pro dashboard there is the section “Machine Translation” where you can choose the languages you want to translate your website into and connect to an online translation service such as Google Translate or Deepl.

With just a few steps, the website will automatically become multilingual. The user will be able to translate the website page by clicking on the language of his preference.

TranslatePress, in its Pro version, also offers numerous other features that can significantly improve the user experience. For example, you can activate the functionality of detection of the user's language which allows you to show a pop-up to the user browsing the website and offer him to translate the site into his native language. This feature detects the user's language via the IP address or via the language set in the Browser.

Translate your website

In conclusion, automatically translating your website will allow you to broaden your market and speed up its understanding by people of different countries reducing time and costs. However, remember that it is important to carry out a review of the machine translation in order to obtain better results also in terms of indexing and positioning.

Are you thinking of translating your website? Contact us to define the best strategy together.

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